The Allahabad High Court has issued a general mandamus to the Competent Authorities under U.P. Apartment Act, 2010 & U.P. Industrial Area Development Act, 1976 or any other cognate enactment to decide the grievance of the home buyers or their associations, positively within 3 months from the date the grievance is brought to their knowledge.
The State of U.P. taking cognizance of the rise in population and demand for space specially for residential purposes enacted U.P. Apartment (Promotion of Construction, Ownership and Maintenance) Act, 2010 .
The object of the Act is to give primacy to the interest of the owners of apartments and protection of their rights against arbitrary and profit oriented actions of the promoters / builders in which a role of an arbiter has been assigned to the competent authority in the Development Authority as held in M/s Designarch Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd. vs. Vice Chairman, Ghaziabad Development Authority, 2013 (9) ADJ 594.
Hon’ble Allahabad High Court took judicial notice that of late large number of cases are coming to the Court on behalf of home-buyers who after having spent their hard-earned life savings, buy an apartment, only to face hostile and arbitrary actions from the promoters/builders/Development Authorities and instead of resolving such disputes, they become mute spectators.
The petitioner, a registered association of home-buyers, preferred a writ petition highlighting several irregularities in violation of their agreements on the part of the respondent no. 3 being the developer-co-promoter of a residential project “Shipra Shritsti”, owned and floated by M/s Shipra Estate Limited & Jay Krishan Estates Developers Pvt. Ltd which despite several representations to the competent authority/respondent no. 2, have gone unattended.
A Bench of Hon’ble Justice Hon’ble Pankaj Naqvi and Hon’ble Justice Piyush Agrawa considering the large number of public interest involved deemed it appropriate to issue a general mandamus to the Competent Authorities to dispose of the grievance of the home-buyers within a stipulated period so as to obviate an individual home-buyer or a registered association, as the case may be, from approaching the Court time and again. The benefit of this order shall also be extended to the competent authority envisaged under U.P. Industrial Area Development Act, 1976 and other cognate enactments.
The writ petition has been disposed of with the following directions:-
(i) A general mandamus is issued to the Competent Authorities under U.P. Apartment Act, 2010 & U.P. Industrial Area Development Act, 1976 or any other cognate enactment to decide the grievance of the home buyers or their associations, positively within 3 months from the date the grievance is brought to their knowledge, by reasoned and speaking order under intimation to the aggrieved persons.
(ii) The Competent Authority shall ensure that before any decision is taken, a right of audience is given to the parties concerned.
(iii) The Competent Authority shall ensure that an officer not below the rank of a Gazetted Officer shall periodically visit the apartment / building at least once in 6 months at a prior notice to the registered association which shall be obliged to circulate it amongst its member so as to give them an opportunity to ventilate their grievance, if any. Any reported violation shall be immediately brought to the notice of the Authority concerned which shall immediately take remedial steps.
(iv) Any inaction on the part of Competent Authority shall be construed as serious dereliction of duty, warranting interference from the State Government.
The Registrar General has been directed to communicate this order to the Principal Secretary (Urban Development), U.P. Government, Lucknow, with a further direction to circulate the same to all the Competent Authorities concerned for due compliance, forthwith.
Title: Shipra Sristhi Apartment vs State of UP and 2 Others
Case No.WRIT – C No. – 13298 of 2020